Mercy College Partners with iMentor to Improve College Access in New York City


Dobbs Ferry, NY – June 21, 2022 - Mercy College has entered a partnership with iMentor to provide high-achieving high school students scholarships to attend Mercy College with limited to no debt. The iMentor Scholars program at Mercy will help ensure iMentor students, many of whom face significant financial hardship and are first-generation college students, continue to achieve success and obtain a college degree.

iMentor, a national mentoring organization, partners with high schools serving students from marginalized communities and pairs those students with mentors for a minimum of two years. Each student builds a long-term relationship with a committed mentor and receives support from the iMentor program on their journey to college and a career.

Similarly, Mercy’s Personalized Achievement Contract (PACT) Program provides all students with one-on-one, personalized mentorship and support for their entire duration of college. While at Mercy, students are paired with a mentor trained in academic advising, career readiness, student life, financial aid issues and leadership development.

“Mercy College and iMentor have a shared mission of helping students thrive and achieve their dreams of a college degree,” said Adam Castro, Mercy College’s vice president for enrollment management. “The partnership demonstrates that collaboration across educational organizations can change the lives of young people facing significant college access challenges and financial barriers to obtaining a college degree. We have an amazing initial cohort starting at Mercy this fall and I can’t wait see how this partnership blossoms.”

The partnership between Mercy College and iMentor will help strengthen both organizations’ goals of equipping young people from all backgrounds with the support and resources necessary to gain a higher education degree and realize personal and career success.

“Attending college is a transformational experience that can open doors to intellectual inquiries, to new skills and relationships, and to meaningful careers that unlock economic mobility. We are thrilled to partner with Mercy College to enable more students to graduate college with their full financial needs met and with the support of their mentors and iMentor’s Post-Secondary Program,” said Heather Wathington, iMentor CEO. “With a shared mission of expanding educational opportunities for students from marginalized communities, iMentor and Mercy are committed to helping students graduate college and achieve their highest ambitions.”

For information on applying to the iMentor program, please contact Kayla Noonan, director of admissions for Mercy College, at (212) 615-3382 or [email protected], or Michelle Tsai, director of marketing and communications for iMentor, at (347) 423-058 or [email protected].

Student Testimonials

iMentor Scholars at Mercy College
From left: Abigail Aviles, Ashley Serrano, Coudjegi Hadara, Jaden Muniz and Marcel Rojas are the first class of iMentor Scholars at Mercy College.

Abigail Aviles, Union Square Academy for Health Sciences

“College is important to me because it’s a whole new experience compared to high school. The environment is more professional and gives you the experience of the real world. I chose Mercy since they have a lot of programs to choose from. Also, the graduation rate is at a high rate which is promising. I plan to become a veterinarian or dentist. The iMentor scholarship program has helped me out a lot by covering a lot of the cost for books and by lowering my out-of-pocket costs.”

Ashley Serrano, Bronx High School for Law & Community Service

“I chose Mercy because it was close to home and affordable. I’ve also only heard good things about Mercy and its small class sizes. My goal at Mercy is to become a secondary English teacher. The iMentor scholarship made a big difference for me because it helped cover my full tuition, offering me a full ride to Mercy College.”

Coudjegi Hadara, Laboratory School of Finance & Technology

“College is important to me because my parents did not have the opportunity to go to college. I am from Mali but was born in Harlem. During the summer before my senior year, I received a letter from Mercy College. I discovered that I could declare criminal science: forensic investigations as a major. This major really aligns with my interests and passions that was fueled from my childhood of watching crime shows. I hope to have a career in law enforcement. The iMentor Scholarship covered a large gap in my financial aid package.”

Jaden Muniz, Bronx High School for Law & Community Service

“I’ve chosen Mercy College because of the location, the financial aid package, the referrals I’ve received, and because it has a biology program with an animal sciences concentration. I plan to go to graduate school after Mercy and become a veterinarian doctor. The iMentor program has helped in a variety of ways – for example they have paired me up with a mentor who has done an amazing job at guiding me to what career path that I want. Also, he helped me figure out what college best fits me.”

Marcel Rojas, Bronx Academy for Software Engineering

“College is important to me because without college I would not be able to reach my goal, which is owning my own house and becoming a star athlete and veterinarian. I chose Mercy because it has an affordable veterinary technology program and animal sciences concentration. It also has a softball team that I am interested in. Currently, I am trying to get a job at the Bronx Zoo working with animals. The iMentor scholarship makes Mercy more affordable to attend. I would have had to take a loan if it wasn’t for the scholarship.”

About Mercy College

Founded in 1950 by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy College is an independent, coeducational college that offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs within five schools: Business, Education, Health and Natural Sciences, Liberal Arts and Social and Behavioral Sciences. The vibrancy of the College culture is sustained by a diverse student body from around the region. The College has campuses in Dobbs Ferry, Bronx and Manhattan as well as online offerings.

About iMentor

iMentor builds mentoring relationships that empower first-generation students to graduate high school, succeed in college and career, and achieve their ambitions. iMentor was founded in 1999 by John Griffin, Richard Buery and Matt Klein. Launched with just 49 students in a single school in the South Bronx, iMentor has served nearly 40,000 students since its founding in 1999 through direct-service programs in Baltimore, the Bay Area, Chicago, and New York City, and through partnerships with local non-profit organizations that implement the iMentor model in communities across the country.

Laura Plunkett
Director of Public Relations
Mercy College
(O) (914) 674-7736
(C) (914) 255-4009

Michelle Tsai
Director of Marketing and Communications
(C) 347-423-0582